The hospitality industry is focused around offering customers an enjoyable experience, from a friendly greeting at the bar, to a delicious meal that leaves guests craving more. Wanting to give customers a five-star experience shouldn’t stop at the bricks and mortar address; it must continue throughout a brand’s online space.
We blogged in 2019 about how important accessible web design is, but now it’s time to update you on current digital marketing guidelines.
Why does digital accessibility affect you and why does it matter?
- A proportion of your guests may be visually impaired, and this is where video captions, image descriptors and alt text become vital within digital communications.
- To assist those with ADHD and dyslexia, web and app design should be intuitive with clear findability.
- Individuals with mobility or dexterity disabilities may struggle with moving content such as pop-ups and captchas. Check your site is usable with keyboard-only access.
- To help those with hearing impairments, provide text transcripts and captions wherever a sound appears.
What can you do to make your marketing more accessible?
- Ensure designers and developers are working to accessibility guidelines.
- Copywriters should simplify digital content and be well-versed in alt tags – both on social media and websites. Using alt tags is not just a ‘keyword stuffing’ exercise, writers should clearly explain what the image portrays.
- Use closed captions in videos (include transcripts as optimal if your budget allows).
- Make sure to fill out alt tags on social media and image descriptors on Twitter.
- Break up chunks of content with headlines, bulleted lists, etc.
- Ensure copy has great readability (you can check this in Word or by using a free writing tool such as Grammarly).
- Make sure links are easily distinguishable from the rest of the text on the page (the most common way to do this is by underlining the link text).
Diversity & inclusion
Within marketing, inclusion is the purposeful process of creating a digital space where all members of the community are considered and valued.
Why does diversity & inclusion matter in hospitality marketing?
- It’s the right thing to do – everyone deserves to be included (and they’re part of your customer base so why would you ignore them?).
- Diversity & inclusion matters to your audience – 71% of the LGBTQ+ community are more likely to interact with content that represents them (in an authentic way).
- Digital campaigns that are targeted to a WASP (white Anglo Saxon protestant) audience will alienate a sizable portion of society who do not see their own culture represented.
- Connecting with a wider audience, reaching different generations, and altering people’s mindsets is a positive move for your brand and wider society.
What can you do to increase diversity & inclusion in your marketing?
- Be willing to change – approaching marketing materials with a non-traditional/non-WASP view is a good start.
- Avoid tokenism by considering diversity and inclusion in an authentic way. Ensure your team is diverse at all levels of hierarchy.
- Accept feedback and learn – this is part of any digital marketing process.
- Ensure visuals and content reflect a diverse range of people/situations – think of age, gender, sexuality, race, etc.
- Writing free of bias/stereotypes. Again, ensure your writing team is diverse with a continued commitment to inclusivity.
- Remove gendered language (e.g., server over waitress).
- Do your research – find out more about what diversity means to other businesses.
Need some expert help?
At Brew, our expertise is in creating a digital space that is easy to find, intuitive to use and captures the tone and atmosphere of your brand. In hospitality, the aim of our work is to engage new and returning guests to visit your premises – a commitment to inclusivity massively increases this potential audience and guest-base.
If you would like us to deliver a talk or develop a strategy for diversity and accessibility in your digital marketing, then please get in touch.